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5 tips to improve your Wi-Fi network

Tips & tricks from…by Peter30/11/2016

Slower Internet: the problem lies with your router more often than you think!

And yet it's quite simple to do something about it. That's not unimportant these days when more and more things are connected with the Internet and, for example, when you're surfing the Net at the same time as your daughter is streaming Netflix and your son is playing Grand Theft Auto online.

That’s as it may be, but how do you get the best reception from your wireless router so everyone at home can enjoy stable and super-fast Internet? Here are my top five tips, specially for you:

  1. Be aware of signal disruptors in your home

    There are more of them than you think. For example, there’s all the devices that work via Bluetooth, but also your doorbell and lighting. Even your microwave oven, your heating and the elevator in the hallway have an impact. Keep your distance from all these.

    Also, don't connect older laptops or smartphones via Wi-Fi. Devices which are more than five years old can bring down the speed of all other connected devices. It's better to connect that old laptop with a traditional network cable. In addition, you can choose to give the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz networks separate names and thus split them up. You can then connect the old devices to the traditional 2.4 GHz network.

  2. Position the router centrally and correctly

    That's really quite logical isn't it? By positioning the device in the middle of your home, as little of the signal as possible is lost to, say, the street.

    Other things you have to consider:

    • Position the router at table height and not on the floor.
    • Don't put the router in a cupboard and avoid putting it near electric cables.

  3. Adjust the settings so they are spot on

    Since everyone in your street has Wi-Fi nowadays, you're often getting in each other's way a little. Indeed, most of us stick with the default settings of the router. However, there are quite a few adjustments you can make to get everything to run much faster:

    • Update your router. The latest firmware may improve your Internet speed. Also consider getting a new router if your current model doesn't support 802.11n or 802.11ac.
    • Adjust the channels. Apps such as inSSIDer allow you to see how busy it is in your area on each of the 13 channels. Next, choose the channel with the fewest Wi-Fi networks.
    • Select the right standard. Your router is probably set to ‘mixed’. However, this setting is not good for your Internet speed. Go for just one standard. If all your devices support it, it's best to opt for the faster 802.11n or 802.11ac.
    • Also select the right channel width. The default here will be ‘Only 20 MHz’, whereas ‘Automatic’ or ‘40 MHz’ are better for 802.11n or 802.11ac.
    • Switch frequencies. It's often quieter on the latest 5 GHz frequency than on the traditional 2.4 GHz connection. Here too, the same thing applies: choose this if all your devices support this latest frequency variant.
    • Go for the WPA2 security protocol. The older WPA and WEP protocols slow down your Internet enormously. Here too, choose just one standard. In your case that would be the 'WPA2 Personal' variant.

  4. Opt for a Wi-Fi amplifier

    In a great many cases your signal will now be excellent on the ground floor, but it can still be significantly improved on the first floor. Therefore, amplify the signal in your bedroom with a so-called range extender. You should set it up centrally on the first floor, in a place where you still get acceptable reception. The Wi-Fi amplifier will pick up the original signal and transmit it again.

    Incidentally, a Wi-Fi amplifier is much cheaper than you might think. You can rent one from us for just €5 per month.

  5. And finally, check your connection

    Now you've fine-tuned everything, it's time to test the speed. You can do this with various apps. I personally recommend inSSIDer.

    Possibly also do a comparison with the real Internet speed.  For this, connect your laptop to the router with a network cable. This way you'll see immediately how much speed you lose by connecting via Wi-Fi.  Because no matter what you do, you'll always lose some.

Still need some more tips about your Wi-Fi router and Internet at home? We'll be happy to help!

Peter

Peter

Hi, my name is Peter and I have a passion for the Internet and communication! I’ve been working at Proximus for 8 years and I'm a huge fan of our brand. I love this company, its employees, the products, and our mission to bring customers closer to what they care about. I’m currently responsible for the digital communication campaigns, but I’ve also worked on rebranding and was a trend watcher in a not-so-distant past.

Hi, my name is Peter and I have a passion for the Internet and communication! I’ve been working at Proximus for 8 years and I'm a huge fan of our brand. I love this company, its employees, the products, and our mission to bring customers closer to what they care about. I’m currently responsible for the digital communication campaigns, but I’ve also worked on rebranding and was a trend watcher in a not-so-distant past.


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